Winnie Griigs - Stories of Small Towns, Big Hearts, Amazing Grace
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Below is a list of workshops I’ve developed and delivered at a number of local, regional and national workshops and conferences. And I’m always toying with new subjects. So if your group is interested in one of these, or in something entirely different, please feel free to contact me so that we can discuss.

 


The Subtle Elements Of Fiction

Workshop Type: Craft
Length: Material can be tailored to fit either a 1 or two hour time slot

Short Description: This workshop explores the elements of fiction that add nuance and resonance to your writing - elements such as foreshadowing, imagery and subtext.

Topics covered include:

  • Discuss the importance of resonance and reader engagement
  • Define and discuss each of the key elements. (Depending on alloted time, these can include Foreshadowing, Imagery, Subtext, Revelations, Transitions, and Sensory detail.)
  • Illustrate the effective use of these key elements, utilizing examples taken from books and movies.

Handouts (available on request):

  • A bulleted outline of topics covered
  • List of suggested reference material for further study

Honing Your Pitch: Making The Most Of Your Editor/Agent Appointment

Workshop Type: Career
Length: Material can be tailored to fit either a 1 or 2 hour slot

Short Description: A how-to workshop developed to help writers prepare for the infamous 10 minute pitch session with an editor or agent.

Topics covered include:

  • How to prepare for the session
  • Specific details of what info to include (and not include) in your pitch
  • How to deliver your pitch
  • What to do after the session

Handouts (available on request):

  • A complete bulleted outline of topics covered
  • Examples provided by published authors on their existing releases will be provided

Backstory: Weaving It In Without Slowing The Pace

Workshop Type: Craft
Length: Material can be tailored to fit either a 1 or 2 hour slot

Short Description:

  • First - Know Your Characters’ Backstory
    • Why character backstory is important
    • What purpose it serves in making your book more memorable
  • Second - Track Backstory Elements
    • Why you should keep track of backstory
    • A quick how-to discussion on using the tracking worksheet, including an example from my own work for illustrative purposes
    • Taking it to the next level: Mining external backstory events to provide context and layer in additional color/realism
  • Third - Weaving It Into Your Story
    • Deciding WHAT to include
    • Deciding WHEN to reveal it
    • Deciding HOW to reveal it most effectively
    • A detailed discussion of seven different methods, along with pros and cons of each and examples from published works and movies for illustrative purposes.

Handouts (available on request):

  • A complete bulleted outline of topics covered
  • A template and working example of a backstory tracking chart

Secondary Characters: Running the Gamut from Walk-ons to Scene Stealers

Workshop Type: Craft
Length: 45-60 minutes

Short Description: This workshop is interactive, a mix of lecture with opportunity for audience participation in discussing and interpreting the sample passages/scenes.

  • Define what a secondary character is
  • Discuss the three key functions of secondary characters
  • Discuss the three broad classifications of secondary characters
  • In depth discussion of the many roles secondary characters play, utilizing examples from well-known books and movies.
  • Illustrate the effective use of these key functions, classifications and roles to enhance and further the main plot.

Handouts (available on request):

  • A complete bulleted outline of topics covered
  • Tip sheet with “DOs and DON’Ts”

Telling Details - Adding color and life to your story

Workshop Type: Craft
Length: 45-60 minutes

Short Description: Discuss how to use the right details to add color and vividness to scenes. Includes:

  • A checklist covering the key dimensions of setting, character and mood
  • A filter to help you choose just the right details for your particular scene
  • A technique that enables you to skillfully weave these select details into your scene in an unobtrusive manner

Handouts (available on request):

  • A complete bulleted outline of topics covered
  • Copies of examples used to illustrate various points”

Taming The Butterflies: Workshop Presentation Skills

Workshop Type: Career
Length: 55-90 min (can be tailored to fit allotted time slot)

Short Description:

Workshop will cover the following elements:

  • Some of the benefits of presenting workshops
  • Selecting a topic and finding an audience
  • Understanding audience expectations as well as your subject
  • Scripting your workshop
  • Tips for effective practice sessions
  • “Glitch Control”
  • Delivery considerations
  • Wrap-up - leave on a high note

Handouts (available on request):

  • Two page bullet list of topics covered
  • One page list of references for follow-up study

Understanding The Stakes: Making Every Scene Count

Workshop Type: Craft
Length: 45-60 minutes

Short Description: Tips and techniques for ensuring that every scene in your manuscript pulls its weight and propels your story forward

  • Understand what ‘episodic writing’ is and why it should be avoided
  • Describe the various purposes a scene must serve
  • Discuss tips for building more muscle into your scenes
  • Discuss how to test your scene to see if it serves a story purpose

Handouts (available on request):

  • A complete bulleted outline of topics covered
  • Copies of examples used to illustrate various points”

MINI-WORKSHOPS

Below is a list of 20-30 minute workshops I've given for various groups

  • Plotting Using the 7Cs method
  • Transitions - Getting From Here To There
  • Characters - Understanding The Basics
  • Networking For Writers
  • Pacing - An Overview

Handouts (available on request):


 
If you have questions about these or other possible workshops, or wish to discuss my speaking to your group, please Contact Me .


 
Winnie Griggs